Millennials are the first generation in America that will probably not be able to do as well as their parents. In the United States, there is not as much upward mobility as there was in the past. What is the cause of this?
CNN reports that Millennials have more college degrees than their parents. They also have an enormous amount of student loan debt. Many millennials have lower-paying jobs than their parents had at the same age when adjusted for inflation. Spending patterns changed as well, due to the high cost of living.
Finding The Money
Saving is not easy. The net worth of Americans, who are from 18 to 35 years old, decreased by 34% since 1996. Even though millennials are financially savvy, the 2008 global financial crisis made it difficult to find jobs and made saving for many nearly impossible.
Those who have been able to put aside some money in the last ten years are lucky if they have $8,000 in savings, which is the average for those millennials trying to save for a home purchase.
Soaring Home Prices
By 2018, the real estate market recovered from the 2008 collapse. In most American cities, housing prices are going up significantly. The home prices surpassed pre-crash levels and now continue to rise. Soaring home prices make buying a home very challenging.
What To Do?
For most millennials, the best choice is to continue to live with their parents and use the lower cost of living as an opportunity to put away enough money for the required down payment to buy a house. Many plan to live very frugally and to save for up to five years if they want to buy a home of their own.
For others, they are developing co-ownership plans, where millennials plan to share home buying with more than one person. In these deals, they become the landlord and the tenants of a multifamily property that they buy together.
The median home price in America is $226,800. First-time buyers, who qualify, can get FHA-backed mortgage financing with as little as 3.5% down. Still, that is $7,938 just for the down payment. There is also the need to have 2% to 5% of the loan amount for closing costs, which can add up to $10,943.
Financial prudence recommends having at least three months of living expenses in savings to cover any unexpected temporary emergencies, like losing a job. Add another $12,000 for this contingency. This means to safely buy a home at the median price, with a low-down-payment loan, a millennial may need to have as much as $30,881.
For conventional financing, with 20% down, the numbers are much higher. For that type of financing, a millennial needs about $66,432.
Millennials face significant challenges in homeownership that are unique to their generation. For these reasons, many are delaying homeownership for at least five years and living with their parents longer, to save more money, to make their dream of homeownership come true in the more distant future.
If you are in the market for a new home or interested in refinancing your current property, be sure to contact your trusted real estate professional.